Connecticut river shad increases two years running

July 5, 2013 by  

According to a recent survey taken in the Connecticut River, the number of fish spawning in the area is high for another year, with quiet stretches near Glastonbury and Rocky Hill among the places with the most fish.

Biologists collected nearly half a million shad at their normal survey spot, the Holyoke dam. The numbers are not as high as they were last year, but there has been a significant increase in shad in the past decade. Fisherman who sell shad from the river agree that it was once again a productive year for their nets.

Alosa sapidissima, or American shad, is the largest member of the herring family. Their season lasts from the April 1 to June 15. At one time, shad fishing was popular along the Connecticut River. Now only a few shad fishing boats remain.

From 1992 to 2005, shad levels in the river plummeted to less than a fifth of the population, making a ban on shad fishing imminent. The numbers have just recently started to increase in the past three years, and shad is now legal to take out of the river.

Postcards featuring each type of fish that can be found in the Connecticut river (including shad) would no doubt be a great asset to the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection. Vibrant photos on the front with a small blurb about the fish and how to help protect them on the back would attract tourists and fishermen alike, perhaps opening up a job for a highly skilled printing company with a specialization in postcard printing.